Passenger Contract, available to German migrants in Amsterdam


The city council at Basel produced this passenger-captain contract in 1816, early in the post-Napoleonic emigration wave, in order to give migrants some defense against the possible malpractices of ships’ captains. Significantly, the contract includes standard pricing, binding passengers to pay 85 South German Gulden per child, and 170 per adult, if they can pay up-front, or 95 and 190 “if they wish to pay in Philadelphia.” The inclusion of these rates by a German-speaking city authority is testament to the deeply embedded nature of the redemptioner contract in the German Atlantic World, well into the American early national period.